The capital of the Beni Suef governorate, Beni Suef is an important agricultural center which grew from a small village since the turn of the century and now hosts a population of over 150,000.It is famous for its linen manufacturing in the Middle Ages, and continues to be heavily involved in cotton-spinning and carpet making. Located about 75 miles south of Cairo, the Meidum Pyramid is nearby, as is the Fayoum Oasis.
The most interesting aspect of Beni Suef is the Museum. The first floor of the museum is devoted to Pharaonic items such as statues, canopic jars and saarcophagi and various Graeco-Roman items. Most of these items came from nearby Abusir and Heracleopolis Magna. The second floor is devoted to Coptic and Muslim items which came from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.